Hit-and-run driver fronts up

02:41, Jun 13 2014
Deisha Graham
SORRY PLEASE: Deisha Graham, 12, and her mum Leana Hoeta would like an apology from a driver who drove away after knocking Deisha over at a crossing on Wednesday. The pair stand next to the crossing, in Seymour St.

The driver of a car believed to have hit a 12-year-old girl on a pedestrian crossing in Blenheim on Wednesday has identified himself to police.

Deisha Graham was making her way across the Seymour St crossing in Blenheim, between a supermarket and the Marlborough District Library, when the car knocked her over and drove away.

She was knocked into the air and landed on the footpath about half a metre away.

Deisha was taken to Wairau Hospital, where she was treated for grazes to her knee and bruising to her hand and discharged.

The incident was recorded on closed-circuit television. The driver, believed to be an elderly man, stopped only briefly.

Deisha said she was "angry and sad" the driver had not stopped, and would "tell him to use his eyes properly" if she had a chance to speak to him.


"We saw that the car had stopped because there were other people that had crossed the road so I went to quickly go over and I got nearly to the end and he just bumped into me."

She had been confused following the accident, she said.

Her half-brother and sister ran to make sure she was OK, before carrying her back to the car in the Countdown carpark.

Her uncle, Tyron Phillips, saw the incident from his car, and thought the driver might have driven away because Deisha's sister waved to him. "Maybe because [she] waved out, he probably thought she was waving to him to say she was OK."

Hoeta and Phillips said the driver should have stopped out of courtesy.

Deisha and her siblings did not have time to react properly, Hoeta said. "I think they might have been a bit shocked and they didn't react as quick as other people would have."

By the time the trio realised what had happened, the driver had already gone.

Phillips drove Deisha to Wairau Hospital, where she was treated for grazes and bruising to her hand and knee, and discharged.

Deisha would be more wary of cars when crossing the road, and would ensure they had seen her before stepping onto the road, even when using a pedestrian crossing, she said.

Her uncle said the incident had made them more aware of how many drivers ignored the rules at pedestrian crossings.

Police thanked members of the public who provided information about the incident.

The Marlborough Express